FAMU Names Reginald Ellis and Gail Randolph as Inaugural Provost Professors

January 17, 2024
Lee Hall
FAMU Names Reginald Ellis and Gail Randolph as Inaugural Provost Professors

Florida A&M University (FAMU) Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Allyson L. Watson, Ph.D., has announced her plan to bolster university-community partnerships through an honorific designated for tenured and/or full professors.

An internal search for the Provost Professor for Community Outreach, Engagement, and Research began earlier this fall and has led to the selection of two faculty members. Reginald Ellis, Ph.D., and Gail Randolph, DPT, will each serve a two-year term, effective immediately.

The first two provost professors at FAMU will develop and implement evidenced-based strategies to successfully address important needs within the Tallahassee region, especially as it relates to the Boldly Striking 2022-2027 Strategic Plan.

“While the heart of academia beats within the walls of our institution, the true pulse of knowledge thrives when we embrace the world beyond,” said Watson. “As provost professors, Dr. Ellis and Dr. Randolph will serve as connectors and conduits for collaborative relationships that ignite the spark of curiosity, foster meaningful learning experiences, and elevate research that enriches the lives of local citizens and the communities we are privileged to serve.”

A FAMU provost professor is a chief liaison and strategist to the university provost who will develop collaborative partnerships with university leaders on programs and projects that impact the local community.


Professor Reginald Ellis

Professor Reginald Ellis


Ellis is an associate professor of history and African American Studies who has been teaching, conducting research, and sharing his passion for history at FAMU for more than 15 years. He said he is excited to empower citizens and communities within the Tallahassee region through this new role, which he believes supports the University’s efforts toward becoming a Carnegie Research 1 institution.

“I’m honored to serve as an inaugural Provost Professor of Community Outreach, Engagement, and Research,” said Ellis. “I see my role as enhancing our faculty researchers’ partnerships with both internal and external stakeholders while building new local, regional, national and international partnerships for all of our researchers.”

An associate professor in the School of Allied Health Sciences, Randolph has been a full-time faculty member at FAMU since 2015. She is most looking forward to leveraging research to improve and transform conditions for local stakeholders, including public agencies, nonprofits, and community-based organizations.

Professor Gail Randolph

Professor Gail Randolph


“This endeavor presents a unique opportunity to extend my passion for helping others beyond the classroom toward making a significant impact in changing lives within our local community,” said Randolph. “I look forward to forging collaborative research partnerships with community partners that will help to develop sustainable solutions for our most pressing needs and shared concerns.”

Tallahassee Commissioner Dianne Williams-Cox applauds her alma mater for its commitment to community growth and development through this new initiative.

“By strengthening its ties to the local community through this endeavor, FAMU is reinforcing its commitment to supporting the progress and prosperity of our citizens. I look forward to seeing how we can help harness the power of higher education to unlock the full potential within our communities for a brighter tomorrow.”

For more information about community outreach, engagement, and research initiatives sponsored by the FAMU Office of the Provost, email provostcomm@famu.edu.